January 17th, 2006



I'm in Tokyo for the rest of this week, staying in Ogikubo with Florian Perret, a friend from Paris who designed the sleeves for Folktronic, Oskar Tennis Champion and the Super Madrigal Brothers album.

Florian now has a very high-powered job with a Tokyo animation company... and a new baby! It took a while to find his company's HQ last night though: we had to go into the lobby of the Hyatt Century to ask directions, which felt like walking onto the set of one of my least favourite films, set in one of my least favourite parts of this city. Right after leaving the Hyatt lobby with its fuck-off chandeliers, arrogant gaijin and Saudi marble we walked through Chuo Koen, a park inhabited by homeless Japanese living under blue tarpaulin. Big city, big Gini spread.

Over dinner at my favourite Nishi-Ogi restaurant last night (a tiny place with room for just ten people, hidden in a backstreet... God, the crispy tatsutaage mackerel was delicious!) Florian told us that rents in Tokyo are now cheaper per square metre than those in New York, London or Paris. He pays around €800 a month for 50 square metres, which, while not quite Berlin-cheap, is pretty reasonable. And the area's nice.